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An Architectural Landmark
The Centennial Hall in Wrocław was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site on July 13, 2006, under its original German name as Hala Stulecia (German: Jahrhunderthalle in Breslau; Centennial Hall in Wrocław). It is not a frequent occurrence that a building merely 100 years old is honoured in this way.
The Centennial Hall in Wrocław / © Polish Tourist OrganisationThe Centennial Hall in Wrocław / © Polish Tourist Organisation

However the construction of the Centennial Hall is one of the turning points in the history of the utilisation of steel for reinforcing structural frames of buildings. It was constructed between 1911 and 1913, in commemoration of the hundredth anniversary of the Battle of the Nations, fought with Napoleon in 1813. Its other purpose was to serve as the centre for the great Centennial Exhibition. The city allocated a great land for this purpose, on the border of Szczytnicki Park, nearby the Zoological Garden and on site of a horse racing track, open until 1907. In the competition for developing the site, Max Berg was chosen from among 43 designers, not surprisingly as he was indeed the urban architect of Wrocław. His project met with loud protests from his competitors, as frequently is the case in such situations. Nevertheless, and regardless of the high costs (Reichmark 1.9 million), a formal building permit was issued on June 28, 1911. At the time of its construction, the Hall had the biggest reinforced concrete roof in the world. The covering central cupola is 67m in diameter with a maximum width of 95m. Available surface amounts to 14000m². The Hall is spacious with the inner height of 43m. A further 56 exhibition rooms and vast lobbies were planned around the central hall, and it was estimated that the Jahrhunderthalle exhibition centre could receive more than 10,000 visitors at a time. Quite an achievement.
 

Poland

The Centenary Hall (Hala Ludowa) in Wrocław: Location

Poland GPS latitude/longitude: 51.10352 , 17.03979

 

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